View RSS Feed

Cecil XIX

Vassals & Valour Discussion Questions

Rate this Entry
1. In Section 1 I decided to place certatin suggestions. This is done to help players become aware of their options under the new rules

2. In 3.1, I define assets in part with the phrase "including but not limited to". I would like to remove this in the final version so it's not so open ended. I believe the list I included thereafter covers everything, but can anyone think of something different?

3. Rule 3.3 could probably be explained more succinctly, but I'm not sure how to do it. It's a simple idea for me to grasp, but not to communicate.

4. The Province Acquisition rule, 3.4, is very important. I want it to be balanced between the body and the faction leader. They should not have to be in harmony for provinces to be assigned, but nor should one side be able to get provinces for whomever they want.

5. Orginally I didn't have a rule like 3.5, but in the test games I noticed people where doing this anyway. Indeed, it's only natural to keep track of one's own finances so I stopped worrying that this would be too onerous. However, I'm happy to hear differing opinions.

6. Should I allow nobles to spread their treasury amongst multiple locations?

7. I intend to create a lasting ‘King vs. Parliament’ conflict throughout the game. In order to do this I need both sides to have the power to makes really difficult for the other, but still have some real power no matter what. Above all, it should as hard as possible, if not impossible for one side to gain total control.

8. How to create new dutchies. Should Kings just be able to let loose? Should the body have a role?

9. Why has it been necessary in the past to only recognize as King and Prince who the game chooses? Is it feasible to have the King choose his sucessor, and have the players recognize a different King than the game does?

10. I feel like I haven't written enough about Dukes, Counts and Houses. Is there something I'm missing?

11. I want a game where players work for and against each other in good measure. We've always done well at the former, but I think we need some encouragement in the latter. To this end I intend to start V&V with the Kingdom in the midst of a civil war, giving us a PVP event right from the start. I'll wait until things get more specific to cook up a scenario.

12. I added rule 3.12, regarding administrative efficiency, because Dukes have precious little reason to want to give away land to Counts besides being nice OOC. To strong? Not enough?

13. I introduced the scutage tax in rule 6.10 for the same reason I added 3.13. Technically this would work the same even if the rule wasn't there, but I wanted to make it explicit. However, I'm worried that it could make it to easy for lords to keep their vassals under their thumb, making their vassals more like serfs. Is this something to worry about?

Submit "Vassals & Valour Discussion Questions" to Digg Submit "Vassals & Valour Discussion Questions" to del.icio.us Submit "Vassals & Valour Discussion Questions" to StumbleUpon Submit "Vassals & Valour Discussion Questions" to Google

Updated 07-23-2010 at 14:39 by Cecil XIX

Tags: None Add / Edit Tags
Categories
Uncategorized

Comments

  1. _Tristan_'s Avatar
    Those rules make pretty much sense to me... I wish I could have had them when we played LotR (would have made Methodios' rebellion more easy...)

    I truly like your idea of starting the game with an on-going civil war. I'll try to adress each of your points in order.

    One question first though : will be GM-only or will you play as well ? have you considered the need for a interim GM and have an idea of the workload expected of you/him ?


    Now to your questions.

    1 - Not much to add/substract.

    2 - I can't think of any other property but those listed so you could effectively do without the bracketed proposition.

    3 - Can surely be rewritten. Let's wait on our legal advisors to lay their hands on it (Tincow ?). I can almost see it rewritten. Will think on it.

    4 - What remains to be defined is how the seizure of an outlawed avatar is to put into effect (automatic/PvP ?)

    5 - Helps tracking how the game evolves if/when you cannot have regular access to it. Will also help in keeping track of expenditures...

    6 - Definitely not. Otherwise, it defies the meaning of the whole rule. And it allows avatars with multiple provinces to never be at risk of losing their treasury when small land-owners are always at risk of losing it if they lose their provinces.

    Which brings to mind one question : what happens if an avatar owning only one province loses it to tha AI/another player and most probably his treasury with it ? He's now officially bankrupt so what options does he have ? Serve as a mercenary for a wage to another avatar ? What else ?

    7 - That is the hardest part. It mostly depends on the players than on the ruleset. See KotF where Philippe was a strong king with a weak Parliament when in LotR we had a strong Parliament and a weak King (no offense meant OK)

    8 - That is also a difficult part of the game. We do not want to make the Houses too artificial but need them to create some contention. Maybe creating victory conditions for the Houses (and maybe have those VCs depend partly on cooperation between houses/ defeating other houses and make those independant from land gains thus allowing "political houses" to have a shot at victory...)

    The problem in this would be to keep those VCs secret as they should be when players could change houses on the deaths of their avatar (or should we require of players to stick to one House once they have started in one ?)

    Or maybe perhaps the GM should define those victory conditions and keep them to himself and use a graded system which would indicate to the Duke if the policy he's leading at one time is successful or leads to nothing.

    9 - I think it is one of the worst limitation of the game. I think it may be be edited through the console by adding/removing the Faction Heir trait from the chosen avatars but this will have to be tested. Nothing can be done about the King though, I think, unless removing the Faction Leader trait allows to change the FL as well. To be tested.

    10 - The "House" rules lack incentive for the players to join Houses. From my point of view, there are no visible advantages for lower-ranks to join a House. There must be an in-game (ie set by rules) equilibrium between the higher and lower ranks of a House, where both have to agin from the existence and duration of said House. I otherwise always found those to be rather artificial...

    11 - Good Idea as it may create some cohesion/dissentio right from the start that may help resolve my fears expressed in "10".

    12 - Surely you meant 3.12. I am not sure piety is the most useful stats when considering the number of provinces a noble could hold onto. I would rather go with Loyalty. Piety is easy to get by going on Crusades. Loyalty is much more fickle.

    As to the penalty, I would rather see the income of the surplus Province substracted completely (or in any percentage seen as fit, maybe 40%, corresponding to the higher costs of administration, law-keeping, corrruption, etc) and this income added to the King's treasury (whose administration, police, etc. is expected to keep order in the absence of the lord).

    13 - It seems logical as this game is more financially-oriented. It goes the same way as requesting units from the Lord's vassals in previous installments of the Throne Room RPGs series.


    Question : How will you divide corruption between settlements ? The game will not recognize the distance to local capital in computing the corruption for any given settlement. I think it would make sense to keep it as it is. Ie if you conquer a faraway settlement, be prepared to have a high corruption unless you manage to convince the King to move the Capital nearer to your lands.

    This whole set of rule seems rather sound but I fear it may soon escalate into a management headache for the GM and maybe even for the players.

    How did it go in the previous V&V ? Was it manageable ?
  2. Ignoramus's Avatar
    I have a few suggestions regarding some questions.

    8 & 10. I think we should base the starting duchies off the family tree like in KotR. Notice how in KotR there was house loyalty? I think that new duchies should only be able to be officially created by the king. Rebellious nobles can attempt to form their own, but they will need to extract recognition from the king in order to have the privileges of a Duchy(Think of it like Wolfgang Hummel, where I was fighting for recognition of an independent principality).

    7. I think the game would best be served if the game started with the king being moderately powerful in influence, but with each duchy having a strong powerbase. The problem in KotF was that the King was way too powerful. Added to the fact that there were so many nobles, intrigue stalled, because it was simply too risky. Get on the king's bad side and you'd not get any land, and without land you'd have no power. But in KotR, I think we had the perfect balance. The Kaiser was important, but as the game wore on, his importance waned. The Duchies were balanced enough that no one duchy could become too powerful.

    Also while we're at it, any ideas for mods or factions? I'd recommend another Western European faction because I think that it lends itself to roleplay the best. Maybe England?
  3. TinCow's Avatar
    The biggest impact from these rules are obviously the individual finances. I agree with you that a successful implementation of a personal finance system would make the game new and interesting. However, we have tried to do that three times before, in two test games and in your V&V game. All have failed due to the complexity of the calculations which become overwhelming after the game gets a few turns in. What makes you think that this system will simplify it enough to make it workable?
  4. Ignoramus's Avatar
    I agree with TC that the financial aspect will be challenging. But maybe if a few guys put their hands up to chip in the time it could be workable?
  5. Cecil XIX's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Tristan de Castelreng
    Those rules make pretty much sense to me... I wish I could have had them when we played LotR (would have made Methodios' rebellion more easy...)
    Indeed, such was my aim.

    Quote Originally Posted by Tristan de Castelreng
    One question first though : will be GM-only or will you play as well ? have you considered the need for a interim GM and have an idea of the workload expected of you/him ?
    I hadn't given it any thought before, but I'll probably start as GM-only, to get used to the workload, than slip into a character. There shouldn't be much of a problem with being both GM and player, as the main job of the GM is just simple arithmetic. You can't mess with numbers without deliberately trying to deceive people, after all. I may or may not need an interim GM, depending on how things go. If I have a character, I may appoint one on occasion to make a decision where my character gives me a conflict of interest. I can't know what the workload would be without knowing how many people will play, but back in V&V I was able to keep track of the finances of myself and three other players without any problems, so I could problem handle six players at the start without any need for help.

    1. & 2. Good, good

    3. Thank you, I'll think about it some more as well.

    4. Definitely PvP. I wrote that last sentence in there so that people would feel justified just going after anybody who illegally holds a province. I don't want it to be automatic either, because I want it to be possible for a faction to gain so much power that they could, at times, go against both King and Parliament. In previous games, changing the political order has been an end-of-game event, such as with the Illuminati. I'd like to make it possible, if not unlikely, for someone to really upset things and still have the game go on.

    5. Having thought about it some more, I think it must stay in. Any information the players give me will be helpful, and I can easily check the turn before and after to see if players are giving me all the information. If they aren't I'll probably levy some minor fine, which should encourage everyone else to cooperate. Does this sound all right?

    6. You're right, the cons outweigh the benefits. As for the scenario you describe, as harsh as it is I don't see too much wrong with it. In the old games a player who lost all his land would almost certainly have to go to someone else to get it back. It's true that with the loss of a treasury, a player could fall considerably behind. However, I think that could work to the game's advantage by encouraging smaller landholders to join a House, and having the opportunity to work together to help out of their own would strengthen the bonds within a house. That being said, I would like players to be able to flee with their treasuries where possible if they know they are going to lose.

    7. That's unfortunate, since we can't really determine who'll be playing who yet. Right now there's just the rules to focus on, but I take it you don't see a problem with them.

    8. It will be tough to find a balance between KotR, where the houses were static, and later games where they just weren't as compelling. Victory conditions are a good idea, but I think rather than making them explicit we should be able to look at things at the end of the game and say "Those guys did the best." I take it you have now problems with the rules for Dutchy creation?

    9. As I understand, removing the faction heir trait only works if you kill the person who you took the trait from. The only mod I've seen work around this problem is dHRR, which you can read about here. They say they've made it so the computer chooses heir more sensible, but even then we could choose him ourselves. I could ask to borrow the code, if there's demand for it. The only other way seems to be to just work around it by using the console. It could be a real inconvience though, does anybody know if it's possible to remove an excommunication without killing the current king?

    10. I think the incentive lies outside the rules. I base the house rules here off of those in KotR, most which dealt with specific houses and Stewards, and were thus inapplicable. I believe players will be inclined to join houses for two reasons. First, in order to recognized within the realm as lord of a settlement a player needs powerful backers. Joining a House would be the best way to accomplish this, because the legistative body determines what provinces get taken and have the first pick at who gets them. The second reason is for protection. Especially in the early game, one settlement will not produce much income beyond what is requirement for a nobles bodyguard and living expenses. Couple that with the AI factions receiving regular cash injections, and joining a House will be necessary for most in order to ensure that there will be people ready to ride to your defense when your attacked. Of course, there's more to worry about than just the AI...

    11. Yes, I also hope it will create a lasting tension throughout the game that will help make it interesting.

    12. Fixed, it refers to 3.12 now. I chose piety because it is the stat most tied to administration, but you make a good case for subsituting loyalty. I'll have to think about it, and see what other say. And you got a very good idea there for what should be done with excess provinces. Unless I hear something better, or the consensus is against it, I'll go with that.

    13. Good, good.

    Quote Originally Posted by Tristan de Castelreng
    Question : How will you divide corruption between settlements ? The game will not recognize the distance to local capital in computing the corruption for any given settlement. I think it would make sense to keep it as it is. Ie if you conquer a faraway settlement, be prepared to have a high corruption unless you manage to convince the King to move the Capital nearer to your lands.
    Implementation is pretty straightforward. Just move the faction capital ingame to the player's personal capital, and see if any of his other provinces have corruption. I'd very much prefer to not keep things as is, as I believe that as you get further away from the capital, you should be more capable of independent action, not less.

    Quote Originally Posted by Tristan de Castelreng
    This whole set of rule seems rather sound but I fear it may soon escalate into a management headache for the GM and maybe even for the players.

    How did it go in the previous V&V ? Was it manageable ?
    In previous V&V games it was perfectly managable, and there were no problems. Addmittedly that would be the bare minimum number of players I would expect in the future, however with proper enforcement of Rule 3.5 I think it's something I could handle. This would not be the first time I've used a spreadsheet with my videogames.

    Although I can't speak for every player, I can say that in V&V managing your property is much like managing your Kingdom in a singleplayer game. You should find it very familiar, and easy to get into. While it's true that your stuff isn't as clearly seperated from the others as in a singleplayer game, you will also have much less stuff to keep track of. One person will never have to manage a sprawling kingdom by himself.

    Thanks for you comments Tristan, it's given me a lot to consider.
  6. Cecil XIX's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Ignoramus
    I have a few suggestions regarding some questions.

    8 & 10. I think we should base the starting duchies off the family tree like in KotR. Notice how in KotR there was house loyalty? I think that new duchies should only be able to be officially created by the king. Rebellious nobles can attempt to form their own, but they will need to extract recognition from the king in order to have the privileges of a Duchy(Think of it like Wolfgang Hummel, where I was fighting for recognition of an independent principality).

    7. I think the game would best be served if the game started with the king being moderately powerful in influence, but with each duchy having a strong powerbase. The problem in KotF was that the King was way too powerful. Added to the fact that there were so many nobles, intrigue stalled, because it was simply too risky. Get on the king's bad side and you'd not get any land, and without land you'd have no power. But in KotR, I think we had the perfect balance. The Kaiser was important, but as the game wore on, his importance waned. The Duchies were balanced enough that no one duchy could become too powerful.

    Also while we're at it, any ideas for mods or factions? I'd recommend another Western European faction because I think that it lends itself to roleplay the best. Maybe England?
    8. & 10. Yes, I agree. I hadn't gotten into the specifics of what the starting houses would be since there's no chosen faction yet, but they should be based off family members.

    7. I expect the King to be quite powerful at the beginning, particularly because of the King's Purse. (We may want to change it to a certain value before we begin) But as time goes on the Houses start to develop their own economies, I think that importance will indeed be challenged. Balancing the Dutchies is something that will depend largely on what mod and faction we choose.

    Speaking of which, I'm not quite sure what mod to choose. I wrote these rules for LTC in mind, they could be unplayable if the mod drastically changes the financial system of the game. England does to be the most suitable faction that hasn't already been featured in a major game yet.
  7. Cecil XIX's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by TinCow
    The biggest impact from these rules are obviously the individual finances. I agree with you that a successful implementation of a personal finance system would make the game new and interesting. However, we have tried to do that three times before, in two test games and in your V&V game. All have failed due to the complexity of the calculations which become overwhelming after the game gets a few turns in. What makes you think that this system will simplify it enough to make it workable?
    Having overseen this same basic system before, I have yet to overwhelmed by the complexity of the sytem, or even challenged by it. I believe this is because I have a rather unsual affinity for spreadsheets, having used them before while playing X-com and during previous, normal TW RPGs. As regards to V&V, I can tell you the reason that failed was not because of the financial system but because I wrote barebones rules that not give the players any reason to interact with each other. Solving that problem is what occupied most of time writing these rules, and I can only hope that I've succeeeded.

    Still, you've convinced me to go back and read those games to see if I missed anything. When you say three times, are you counting V&V's test game and 'main' game seperately? Or are you counting Igno's Magna Carta games, which used a similar idea by giving players an allowance base on the number and level of the settlements they owned?
  8. TinCow's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Cecil XIX
    Having overseen this same basic system before, I have yet to overwhelmed by the complexity of the sytem, or even challenged by it. I believe this is because I have a rather unsual affinity for spreadsheets, having used them before while playing X-com and during previous, normal TW RPGs. As regards to V&V, I can tell you the reason that failed was not because of the financial system but because I wrote barebones rules that not give the players any reason to interact with each other. Solving that problem is what occupied most of time writing these rules, and I can only hope that I've succeeeded.
    If you are happy handling the numbers and can do so accurately, that's the solution right there. The previous problems I observed were that people did not understand how to accurately calculate the individual funds and it took so much time to figure out the finances that it was not enjoyable. If you're able to take all of that work out of the game for the players, then it could indeed succeed.

    Quote Originally Posted by Cecil XIX
    Still, you've convinced me to go back and read those games to see if I missed anything. When you say three times, are you counting V&V's test game and 'main' game seperately? Or are you counting Igno's Magna Carta games, which used a similar idea by giving players an allowance base on the number and level of the settlements they owned?
    The first attempt was the HRE Test game which was played prior to KotR. Since it wasn't part of KotR, it's unfortunately not indexed in the archive reference thread. However, here are the relevant threads:
    https://forums.totalwar.org/vb/showth...est-OOC-Thread
    https://forums.totalwar.org/vb/showth...-Orders-Thread
    https://forums.totalwar.org/vb/showth...-Deliberations
    https://forums.totalwar.org/vb/showth...HRE-Tests-PBEM

    For the life of me, I now cannot remember what the other 'test' game I referred to was. I could have sworn it was either the KotF test game or one of the EB games which tried it again, but I can't remember which and don't have time to search them to check. Can anyone else remember? For some reason I want to say there was attempt after the first V&V, but I can't remember what it was.
  9. Ignoramus's Avatar
    I briefly tried a similar idea with Magna Carta, but that fizzed because we only had 4 or 5 players - as a result, the King and Prince could outvote the other nobles in Parliament, and the other players dropped out.
  10. Cecil XIX's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by TinCow
    If you are happy handling the numbers and can do so accurately, that's the solution right there. The previous problems I observed were that people did not understand how to accurately calculate the individual funds and it took so much time to figure out the finances that it was not enjoyable. If you're able to take all of that work out of the game for the players, then it could indeed succeed.

    The first attempt was the HRE Test game which was played prior to KotR. Since it wasn't part of KotR, it's unfortunately not indexed in the archive reference thread. However, here are the relevant threads:
    https://forums.totalwar.org/vb/showth...est-OOC-Thread
    https://forums.totalwar.org/vb/showth...-Orders-Thread
    https://forums.totalwar.org/vb/showth...-Deliberations
    https://forums.totalwar.org/vb/showth...HRE-Tests-PBEM
    Yes, if my memory serves there were no problems calculating the numbers during V&V's previous incarnation. I'm not sure about taking *all* the work out of the game for the players, since at they very least they'd probably want to predict how much money they're going to have next turn, but what work the players have to do should be almost exactly like playing in SP campaign with a very small faction; something they're already familar with. I also think that in the HRE test game, it wasn't known back then that it was impossible to accurately predict exactly how the treasury would change from turn-to-turn. In V&V I don't even try, rather the change is taken from the Financial Overview screen, and if doesn't happen that way I make it happen that way via the console command. In any case, I'll be sure to reread those threads when I have the time. They were the inspiration for all of this.

    Quote Originally Posted by TinCow
    For the life of me, I now cannot remember what the other 'test' game I referred to was. I could have sworn it was either the KotF test game or one of the EB games which tried it again, but I can't remember which and don't have time to search them to check. Can anyone else remember? For some reason I want to say there was attempt after the first V&V, but I can't remember what it was.
    Wait, one of the EB games tried it again? I'll have to look for that. Incidentally, here are the relevant threads from the past V&V if anyone's interested to see the barebones implementation of the new financial system:

    Rules, Saves and Turn-By-Turn Reports
    OOC Thread
    King's Council
    King's Court at Esztergom
    Battle Reports and Stories

    That last one includes my favorite out of all the battles I've fought for these games, which is kind of a shame.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ignoramus
    I briefly tried a similar idea with Magna Carta, but that fizzed because we only had 4 or 5 players - as a result, the King and Prince could outvote the other nobles in Parliament, and the other players dropped out.
    That's interesting. When the start is more finalized I'll have to take steps to avert somethings similar. I keep thinking to myself, "Well, KotR only had six players", but KotR had six characters, and a lot more players. I'll have to add something to the rules explicitly allowing people to join without having characters, or letting them play as agents.
  11. TinCow's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Cecil XIX
    Wait, one of the EB games tried it again? I'll have to look for that.
    I'm not positive about that, I just know that there have been at least three attempts at it. It's possible the other one is indeed the Magna Carta game and I'm just remembering wrong.

    I do encourage you to give your current system a try. Individual finances is pretty much the 'holy grail' of TW RPG freedom, so if you can get it to work well it would be an almost perfect game setup. My only caution is to you as the GM: beware of taking on a duty that is so demanding that it consumes all of your time. Even if you can spare the time required, such an immense devotion to a single game can make you burn out. I was extremely fatigued after the KotR Cataclysm and LotR totally exhausted me. A strong and active GM makes for a very good game, but also for a very tired GM.
  12. Cecil XIX's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by TinCow
    I'm not positive about that, I just know that there have been at least three attempts at it. It's possible the other one is indeed the Magna Carta game and I'm just remembering wrong.

    I do encourage you to give your current system a try. Individual finances is pretty much the 'holy grail' of TW RPG freedom, so if you can get it to work well it would be an almost perfect game setup. My only caution is to you as the GM: beware of taking on a duty that is so demanding that it consumes all of your time. Even if you can spare the time required, such an immense devotion to a single game can make you burn out. I was extremely fatigued after the KotR Cataclysm and LotR totally exhausted me. A strong and active GM makes for a very good game, but also for a very tired GM.
    That's for the advice Tincow, I'll have to be careful and make sure I can handle before deciding to wade into things with my own character.
  13. Cecil XIX's Avatar
    Now that the semi-public discussion has finished, I've moved onto the next stage and begun a preliminary thread in the TW RPG subforum. Please continue all further discussion here.
Single Sign On provided by vBSSO